Tag Archives: mccarter theatre

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 23: Dog, Blackbird, Phoenix.

Today we freeze the script and score. No more lyric changes, no more melody changes, no more line changes. They learn exactly what’s there as our window before tech rehearsals dwindles down and down. It is tempting, as we watch a run-through, or a work-through of a scene, to come up with text- or music-based […]

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 21: Musical Director *and* Orchestrator.

Our musical director and orchestrator is James Sampliner. I have long admired his incredible piano playing, which is WAY better than mine; his incredible arranging skills; his boundless joy at the keyboard which emanates all through the room. I am pitching in in the rehearsal room, composing incidental/transitional music on the fly and playing for […]

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 20: The writing endgame.

We are in the endgame. We are shifting tiny puzzle pieces around in the last few minutes of the show, tweaking how things land, checking to make sure we like the tone, trying hard not to hold on to something just because we did a lot of work on it and only keeping it if […]

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 19: The best idea wins.

Sometimes you get too close to something after working on it for too long, and you can’t see the right solution directly in front of you. Back in late 2006 we were sitting around a table, with Jeff Calhoun and Coy Middlebrook and Jeff’s assistant whose name I am embarrassed to admit I have forgotten. […]

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 18: You can be too careful.

It’s Thursday. 6:24 AM. Waiting for the kid to wake up, which will be announced by a thump on the floor above me and the sound of his feet stomping merrily into our bedroom upstairs. I will call out “is that my favorite boy?” and he’ll shout out, “HELLO, DEEDAH!” and we’ll get a round […]

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 17: This is how I roll.

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 14: Embarrassed Toadstool Guy.

So I’m up late the night before, cranking out sheet music for the scene changes, and somebody says something about something at the rehearsal, and it’s like, 10 pm, and I think I nod and say, yeah, sure. I don’t remember what I’ve just agreed to. I simply need to go home and sleep. And […]

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 13: Sucking it up.

Yesterday was exciting. Yesterday we woke up to find that Val had won the grand prize in a contest, and yesterday Rachel and Val and I had a three-way meeting of the minds where we found and settled on a revised ending that we all really love. This morning I am at the theater, alone […]

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Day 12: Moving forward together with alacrity.

Another read-through of Act 2 yesterday, now that they’ve learned the music at the end. Everyone feels we’ve got the overall structure for Act 2 down now, but we’re missing crucial pieces that we couldn’t see when we were down in the trees, missing the forest. Today, Rachel is coming back to our apartment and […]

Sleeping Beauty Wakes at McCarter, Days 10 & 11: Submit, Recuperate.

At 12:20 pm yesterday, we turned in script pages for the end of the show, arguing (constructively!) about lyrics and stage directions until the last possible second. As expected, I turned in sheet music only for the beginning of the end, a piece I titled “Typical Wretchedly Horrible World,” which is what the patients feel […]